China is a country which owns a long history. Therefore, Chinese education system is developing continuously. The education heritage is particularly rich. The purpose of this essay is to analyze the development of Chinese education system. This essay firstly will give a literature review. Then the essay will explain the phase of Chinese education system as well as the education system in different social phases in details so that it can be understood that the change of Chinese education system clearly. After that, this essay will discuss how Chinese education system contributes to the Chinese economic growth. At last it concludes that knowing the development of Chinese education system is very significant to the current development of education.
Education plays a critical role in the development of a country. China has a long history, and then the education heritage is particularly rich. Therefore, China has been accumulated a tremendous wealth of information and experience of education system.
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Before 1990, China was in the feudal society. It did not have public schools and students went to primary schools. In the feudal society, females were not permitted to accept the education. Since 1900, China has entered the end of Qing Dynasty, which means that China has entered Modern History phase. (Alitto, 1999) With the change of the nature of Chinese society, education system also changed accordingly. From then till 21st century, the change of Chinese education system can be divided into three phases. The first phase is the education system in the modern history, that is, the end of Qing Dynasty; the second period is the education system in the Republic of China from 1915 to 1949; the third is the education system in the People's Republic of China from 1949 to now. (Burton, 1996) In each phase, the education system has developed much and made progress at that time, which offered great experience that is rather helpful to current education.
Currently, Chinese education system is consisted of four parts, including basic education, secondary vocational and technical education, higher education and adult education. (Rui, 2003) Basic education refers to the pre-school education, general primary education and secondary education General primary education lasts for six years. Secondary education is divided into junior education and senior education. Chinese government attaches great importance to basic education. Since 1986, most areas of the country are universalized in general primary education. Major cities and some economically developed regions are accepted secondary education.
Secondary vocational and technical education includes general secondary schools, technical schools, vocational secondary education, as well as various forms of short-term vocational and technical training. Since 1980s, Chinese secondary vocational and technical education had rapid development. In 1997, all types of secondary vocational and technical schools reached 33,464 and the number of students reached 1.8 million. (Geoff, 2005) There were more than 2,100 training centers in the end of 1990s.
General higher education refers to college, undergraduate, graduate and other higher educational levels of education. In the higher education, college usually has two or three years for education. Undergraduate usually lasts 4 years and medicine undergraduate usually lasts 5 years. (Sianesi, 2003) In addition, postgraduate education system lasts 2 or 3 years and doctoral education system is 3 years. Through 50 years, the country has made great progress in the development of higher education. Since 1991, China began to implement the degree system. From then, the degrees are divided into bachelor, master and doctorate. After a series of reforms and restructuring, higher education increased energy and had the development in the scales. The structure has become more reasonable and education quality and school effectiveness notably improved.
Adult education includes the teaching education, literacy education and other forms of education which aims at the adults. Adult Education has developed rapidly. In 1999, there are 891 adult colleges in China. After entering 21st century, more adult education colleges have opened. More people choose to accept the adult education because they realize the importance of education.
Chinese government thinks that education socialization is the main way to build the economic growth. (Krueger, 2001) Only if the comprehensive education is improved, the economic level will grow. Nowadays it has entered the information and technology times, education is especially to the development of a country. Only if the country has rich education, the country can be strong. Therefore, to know the change of education system will be helpful to find out which kinds of education systems should be applied to the development of China.
The Phase of Chinese Education System & Education System in Different Historical Phase
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Since 1900, China has entered the end of Qing Dynasty, which means that China has entered Modern History phase. With the change of the nature of Chinese society, education system also changed accordingly. From then till 21st century, the change of Chinese education system can be divided into three phases. The first phase is the education system in the modern history, that is, the end of Qing Dynasty; the second period is the education system in the Republic of China from 1915 to 1949; the third is the education system in the People's Republic of China from 1949 to now. In each phase, the education system has developed much and made progress at that time, which offered great experience that is rather helpful to current education.
If learning the change of Chinese education system, it will be very necessary to know the education system in different historical phase. The change of Chinese education system can be discussed from three phases.
Education System in the Modern History
In 1901, Liu Kunyi and Zhang Zhidong put forward to change the school system and imitate the Japanese education system. In 1905, the government of Qing Dynasty repealed "KeJu" education system, which is a traditional education system and has last many years. From then on, new education system developed fast all over the areas of China. In China, women traditionally are not approved to access to school. Therefore, before the modern history, there are no formal educational institutions for women. However, when China was at the end of Qing Dynasty, it began to build women school so that women could accept education from then on, which is a large change comparing to traditional education system. In modern history, more and more people chose to go to foreign countries for education. It is estimated that the increasing number of students in the United States had reached more than 600 in 1910.
Education System in the Republic of China
After the republican revolution, the new education system of the late Qing Dynasty has been basically complete. The government of Republic of China basically inherited the education system in the Qing Dynasty. Beijing government of Republic of China kept the original charge of education, changing the Culture Division to the Ministry of Education to retain the same subordinate bodies. In the education sector, it began to imitate the education in the United States in the early years, not Japan. In 1918, the Church School in China increased to 6000 and owned 300,000 students. Between 1920s and 1930s, Civilian education and rural education were developed by a group of people. During the period of Republic of China, the government has implemented to establish a large number of specialized schools and colleges. According to related references, there are totally 32 stated-owned universities all over the countries. At that time, private schools began to rise, which has never existed in the past.
Education System in the People's Republic of China
In 1949, China has an important historical change, that is, People's Republic of China was established. After that, China became a socialist country, so the education system was changed to develop towards Soviet Union. The government of People's Republic of China decided to split some completed universities. As People's Republic of China was at the beginning stage of establishment, it required a large number of industrial and technical personnel. Then the government created a large number of Chinese technology institutes. At the same time, college entrance examination has also formally established in 1955. In 1950, China has provided nine-year compulsory education for a fifth of the world's population.(Geoff, 2005) Nine-year compulsory education operates in 90 percent of China's populated areas, and illiteracy in the young and mid-aged population has fallen from over 80 percent down to five percent.(Agelasto, 2001) Between 1966 and 1976, the outbreak of Cultural Revolution made the development of the education system in China have been geared particularly to the advancement of economic modernization. At the same time, all schools were closed the lessons and university entrance exams were canceled. Until 1977, the Culture Revolution has finished and college entrance was recovered. Among the notable official efforts to improve the system were a 1984 decision to formulate major laws on education in the next several years and a 1985 plan to reform the education system. (Rui, 2003) Investment in education has increased in recent years; the proportion of the overall budget allocated to education has been increased by one percentage point every year since 1998. (Chan, 2001) Nowadays, there are preschools, kindergartens, schools for the deaf and blind, key schools, primary schools, secondary schools and various institutions of higher learning. In current times, the education stage in China can be divided into four stages: the first stage is Primary School and the age is from 6 to 12; the second stage is Junior middle school and the age is from 12 to 15; the third stage is senior high school and the age is from 15 to 18; the fourth stage is university or colleges and the age is from 18 to 22. Of them, primary school and junior middle school can share compulsory education.
The Development of Chinese Education System Promotes Economic Growth
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In 1950s, Chinese economic development level was obviously lower than any other developed countries. With the reform and opening up policy, Chinese government began to attach more importance on the education. As a result, the government tried best to let every child accept the education. In 1960, Chinese annual GNP per person was less tan USD 191.61 dollars. (Wang, 2003) However, through the endeavor in several years, the annual GNP per person in 1995 has reached USD572.12 dollars. In 1960, Chinese high education only took up 1.75 percent in the whole country. Accompanying with reform and opening up policy, Chinese government enlarged the scales of universities. Between 1990 and 1998, the total quantities of students who studied in the school increased from previous 2.0627 millions to 3.4088 millions. Its annual growth rate has reached 8.2 percent. (Sicular, 2002)
The development of education needs large investments of capitals. However, education also consumes much labor. At present, the workers who engage in the education are over 10 millions. Every year, a lot of scientific results create large economic efficiency directly. And increase the social wealth. Therefore, education can impact on the growth of GDP directly. In addition, the industry which supports and ensures the educational service can enlarge with the development of education. Through this, it can obtain large investments and outputs of the materials. (Law, 1996) Therefore, the development can influence on the GDP indirectly and promote the growth of GDP. Between 1952 and 1978, the education's contribution to the increase of Chinese national economy is RMB 96.2 billions. (Xiao, 2006) This number took up 41 percent of total growth of national economy. From 1978 to 1997, the education's contribution to the increase of Chinese national economy is RMB705.3 billions, which took up 47.8 percent of total national economy. It can be seen that the growth of a national economy will increase the educational investments. Meanwhile, educational development can promote the growth of national economy.
Enlarging education, especially high education, not only could satisfy social development and people's demand, but also offer more job positions of educational service. In a certain degree, enlarging high education may create new employments for society and also take the development of industry which supports and ensures the education, such as architecture industry, financial industry, publishing industry and so on. It is investigated that in 2005, people's bank deposit owned 14000 billions. Of all, education deposit took up 44 percent. (Krueger, 2001) At present, in Chinese cities, the fastest consumption is education, which has increased by 20 percent every year. Development of higher education, increased personal income in the market economy, People are not only familiar that education has a great impact on the quality of life, but also deeply appreciate that education has directly impacted on economic efficiency in the future.
According to the above statistics, it can be found that Chinese education industry is so-called public schools which are made of most national governments, local government, so that the country resulted in insufficient investment in education. As a result, education resources should not be a reasonable configuration and the schools' efficiency is not high. (Kwong, 2005) In order to meet the needs of higher education, it is essential to not only to increase the investment of government, but also to introduce a wide range of social groups, state-owned enterprises and private enterprises, individuals or other social groups to become the subject of education. (Fong, 2004) To develop higher education, the main diversity of our country realize the education level of economic development with the developed countries there is a large gap between supply and demand of funds for education has become a constraint in the development of education. The main diversification of education can finance many non-governmental funds, reducing the country's financial burden. (Dow, 2005) In a large extent, it could insist the school autonomy and academic freedom, promoting the healthy development of science and culture. (Cleverley, 2004) Meanwhile, the main diversification of education can guarantee a successful transition from the stage of a small number of higher educational to popularity stage. It can transfer large number of personnel to enterprises, especially for small and medium enterprises In fact, developed countries own a high degree of private schools.
According to the findings, China has entered the high educational popularity phase. However, China is a large population base and has a feature of regional imbalances in the development of education. (Chen, 2006) The contribution of higher education to the GDP Chinese eastern, central and western regions were respectively 1.47%, 1.17%, 0.68%. Of all, Shanghai's contribution took up the highest rate--2.75 percent. But Qinghai's contribution took up the minimum-- only 0.17%. (Bassanini, 2001) To achieve the sustainable economic development in China, it is necessary to boost economic development in the eastern part to drive the economy in the center and western China because higher education must be a balanced development of the region. Therefore, Chinese educational development still needs a long road and the country should develop a wide range of forms of higher education. At the same time, it is very significant to improve the quality of education rather than just the number of students. In this situation, China can deliver more talents to the society, and finally will improve the national economic growth. In the past 20 yearsï¼ŒChina has experienced the reform and opening-up policy, thus Chinese education the implemented the bounds of history. In the new international and domestic environment, China must face the important responsibility how to maintain the society to attach great importance to education reform and investment in education system. (Croizier, 2000) It is the fundamental guarantee for China economic sustainable development to ensure that the implementation of compulsory education in rural areas. Through effective measures, Chinese national education system could play a leading role and become an important cornerstone for economic development.
It can be seen that from 1900 to now, the education system in China has changed too much. Therefore, to know the change of education system will be helpful to find out which kinds of education systems should be applied to the development of China. Of course, there are still some disadvantages of current education system. The government is improving the education system and making better on this point.